Howto install nVIDIA drivers manually on Ubuntu 10.04 (Lucid Lynx)

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If you are trying to install nVidia drivers from their website you might receive the following error

ERROR: Unable to load the kernel module ‘nvidia.ko'.  This happens most frequently when this kernel module was built against the wrong or improperly configured kernel sources, with a version of gcc that differs from the one used to build the target kernel, or if a driver such as rivafb/nvidiafb is present and prevents the NVIDIA kernel module from obtaining ownership of the NVIDIA graphics device(s), or NVIDIA GPU installed in this system is not supported by this NVIDIA Linux graphics driver release.

To fix the above error message use the following procedure

1) Download Newest Nvidia drivers from here

2) Open module blacklist as admin

gksudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf

Add these lines and save:

blacklist vga16fb
blacklist nouveau
blacklist rivafb
blacklist nvidiafb
blacklist rivatv

3) Uninstall any previously installed Nvidia drivers:

sudo apt-get --purge remove nvidia-*

4) Reboot your computer

5) When an error message pops up saying that Ubuntu cannot load Nvidia drivers, choose Exit to terminal (Exit to console)

6) Login and cd to the directory where you saved your file

7)Install drivers

sudo sh

8)Start GDM

sudo service gdm start

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119 Responses

  1. ethnopunk says:

    Whatever happened to Envy, it was a great tool for updating Nvidia drivers?

  2. ethnopunk says:

    I am viewing this page in the technicolour 2d world of lynx browser and hoping I can find some way of wget the 195 Nvidia driver, since I neglected to checksum it before embarking on the rash step of deleting my current nvidia* setup and rebooting. Ouch, I am now in console land.

  3. ethnopunk says:

    Okay, managed to download the nvidia driver with another machine, transferred and carried on as directed. Works perfectly and fixed my problems with tty7

    I could have downloaded via lftp, but keyboard is missing a few keys and no virtual keyboard in console. Thanks for the tutorial.:)

  4. Von says:

    Typo: you need a backslash in front of the asterix in your apt-get command to keep the shell from processing it. I.e.:

    sudo apt-get –purge remove nvidia-\*

  5. PeterPedro says:

    It worked, then stopped working so I installed a newer driver, so it worked again, but now It stopped working again 🙁 Is it possible that they are disabling the drivers via updates? Maybe they don’t want people to install them? The default ones are not supported and buggy but I still want to install them so they stop messing (disabling) with my drivers, but how to uninstall the driver installed with this tutorial?

  6. drz4007 says:

    Worked for me!!. This command though “sudo apt-get –purge remove nvidia-*” was substituded with “sudo apt-get purge nvidia-*”. Why does that happen? Does anybody know?

  7. seaders says:

    This just won’t work for me, straight away from the first command
    ‘gksudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf’,
    as soon as I add in the lines stated, I get 100s of repeated errors
    ‘error: line 53476: bad flag alias index: 0
    error: line 53476: bad flag vector alias’

    I’m not sure if that’s regular behaviour, or not, but when I then go further through, I get the same error at the end that I got at the start, the
    ‘ERROR: Unable to load the kernel module ‘nvidia.ko’…’

  8. cuno says:

    Hey, Thanks for the help.
    Worked fine for me.
    I use an Aspire 5739G with Nvidia Geforce GT 240M.

    But if i restart my computer, the driver wont load correctly while booting. I allways have to reinstall the driver…

    Someone got an idea?

  9. akshay says:

    @seaders:- its a regular error….dont worry…dont stare too much at the terminal,ur not supposed to see those errors….lol…

  10. a happy reader says:

    it worked fine on my msi vr630 laptop
    thank you so much

  11. Conrado says:

    WOW!!! men! IT WORKS!!! uff thanks u so much!!!

  12. whiteknight says:

    excellent! thanks!
    i used sudo apt-get remove nvidia-* which worked just as well

  13. HaTeMe says:

    Dont work for me …
    Same Error when i try to install the Driver.

  14. yev says:

    when i add those lines at the black list file and save it and when i restart it doesnt say no nvidia driver found it just logs in. ive unistalled all of the drivers. what do i do?

  15. kurt says:

    when I try to install it wont let me because im running an x server. What do I do??

  16. Ron says:

    Worked like a dream.

  17. nolrai says:

    “when i add those lines at the black list file and save it and when i restart it doesnt say no nvidia driver found it just logs in. ive unistalled all of the drivers. what do i do?”

    Same for me.
    I exited the x-server and I still get the same error message about the .ko

  18. Mushir says:

    Thanks…..Worked without any hitch

    Just out of curiosity why do we have to add these lines in /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf

    blacklist vga16fb
    blacklist nouveau
    blacklist rivafb
    blacklist nvidiafb
    blacklist rivatv

    When i tried to enable them after driver is installed then my xserver crashed 🙁

  19. Nicke monitor i is off says:

    This works perfectly for my VPCF11M1E/H Sony VAIO. Only problem i have is that after installation i can get into the ctrl + alt + f1-f6 menu’s.

    The monitor seems to be able to handle the refresh rates.( it seems that monitor is being switched off as soon as a i press that ctrl alt f1 combination) I have tried to adjust refresh rates in xorg.conf file but no luck so far.

  20. Jim C. says:

    @”Nicke monitor i is off says”

    The ctrl + alt f1-f6 problem is exactly the same problem I have had for many months now. Fortunately, I haven’t needed them but I sure would appreciate any insight/workaround that could be provided. 🙂

  21. Steve says:

    “Login and cd to the directory where you saved your file”

    This is where I am lost.

    How do I “cd” to my desktop directory? or any other directory for that matter?

  22. Deansdale says:

    in terminal, just type ‘cd Desktop’ (‘Desktop’ with the ‘D’ in Upper Case)

  23. Justus James says:

    Hello sir, i have started to use Ubuntu10.04 version in my Aspire 4736Z laptop but dont have properitary drivers enabled in my laptop and it doesnt show the drivers available so kindly help me how to do this and how to install the drivers so that it may help to install in more than 10 systems.
    please i am waiting for your kind help.

  24. Justus James says:

    hello sir kindly inform me about what are the drivers to be installed on ubuntu10.04 version.
    please inform me as early as possible.

  25. ggshack says:

    Thank you! I’m finally using 260.x drivers instead of 195.x.
    Now if this could only be automated… 🙂

  26. Olof Ingelborn says:

    I need driver for ubuntu 10.04 to my printer Canon iP3600

  27. denpanosekai says:

    Overall this worked great and helped me get past the ‘nvidia.ko’ error message! THANKS.

    However I had tons of errors while running the drivers script for the second time (step 7). I just acknowledged all of them and now I’m running 260.19.21!

  28. Steve says:

    On my dell xps l501x (GeoForce GT 435m) laptop this sequence work fine after boot. I save the resulting xorg.conf file to /etc/X11 directory, but on the next boot the settings do not get applied … I have to relaunch the “NVIDIA X Server Settings” and reconfigure the driver.

    Is there something X11’ish I am missing to get the xorg.conf applied automatically?

  29. LostInCPUSpace says:

    Installed version of 10.04 LTS. I Tried for hours to get my video resolution to 1024 x 768 instead of the low resolution 800 x 600. If I boot up with the 10.04 Live CD, I get the proper resolution, however when I start the system normally I cannot get that resolution. Is there any method that allow me to copy the files from the Live CD to my system on my computer

  30. NvidiaInstallMan says:

    It took me FOREVER to figure out, but this is a step by step that works for me every time to install Nvidia video drivers in Ubuntu 10.10 on my Sony Vaio VPCF115FM :

    1. Download linux drivers from

    Disable Nouveau.

    2. Open a Terminal and type the following:

    sudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf

    3. In the opened file, add the following text anywhere:

    blacklist nouveau

    4. Save and exit gedit.

    5. In the Terminal type the following (taken from

    echo options nouveau modeset=0 | sudo tee -a /etc/modprobe.d/nouveau-kms.conf

    sudo update-initramfs -u

    6. Reboot

    7. Press CTRL+ALT+F2

    8. Type: sudo service gdm stop

    9. Type: cd Downloads

    10. Type: sudo sh NVIDIA-Linux-x…….

    11. Type: sudo restart

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